1. Golden challenge
Al Golden's first year as the head coach of the Hurricane won't be easy dealing with the NCAA investigations. Golden went 27-34 in five seasons at Temple before taking over for Randy Shannon, who was fired after four seasons at UM.
2. Double-digit drought
The Hurricanes will be looking for their first 10-win season since 2003. During that span, they have not appeared in the ACC title game and are 2-4 in bowl games.
3. Miller time
Running back Lamar Miller is poised for a breakout season. The 5-foot-11, 212-pound sophomore has plenty of speed and has had a strong offseason, including a 166-yard, three-touchdown performance on 10 carries in the spring game. He rushed for 646 yards and averaged six yards a carry last season.
4. Spence leads D
Senior outside linebacker Sean Spence is the defense's best player and undisputed captain. Spence was second on the team with 111 tackles last season, including 17 for a loss.
5. Corner questions
The cornerbacks are unproven and could be picked apart by their opponents this season. Brandon McGee is the fastest of the group. JoJo Nicolas and Kacy Rodgers moved over from safety, Michael Williams transferred from Wake Forest, and freshman Thomas Finnie enrolled early to help the questionable unit.